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Waking a car from a 15-year slumber...

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DEAR TOM AND RAY:
I HAVE A 1955 CADILLAC THAT HASN'T BEEN STARTED IN OVER 15 YEARS. WHAT SHOULD BE DONE BEFORE AT?TEMPTING TO START THE CAR TO PREVENT DAMAGE TO THE ENGINE?
JACK

TOM: THE BEST THING YOU CAN DO BEFORE YOU START IT IS SELL IT. SERIOUSLY, JACK, UNLESS YOU'RE PREPARED TO RESTORE THIS OLD BEAST, YOU SHOULD PROBABLY JUST LEAVE IT ALONE. I'LL BET THERE'S SO MUCH RUST INSIDE THOSE CYLINDERS THAT STARTING IT WOULD BREAK EVERY RING IN THE ENGINE.

RAY: I UNDERSTAND THE TEMPTATION TO START IT. YOU WANT TO GO BACK AND REMEMBER HOW GREAT THINGS WERE FIFTEEN YEARS AGO; YOU STILL HAD HAIR, YOU COULD CLIMB STAIRS WITHOUT A GRAPPLING HOOK, YOU AND YOUR YOUNGEST DAUGHTER WERE STILL ON SPEAKING TERMS. BUT FIRING UP THIS OLD SLED WON'T BRING BACK THE GOOD OLD DAYS. IN FACT, I'LL BET YOU HAD GOOD REASONS FOR PARKING IT FIFTEEN YEARS AGO AND LEAVING IT PARKED! AND TRUST US, IT HASN'T IMPROVED WITH AGE EITHER.

TOM: BUT IF YOU CAN'T RESIST THE TEMPTATION, JACK, TRY TURNING THE CRANKSHAFT BY HAND FIRST. PUT A WRENCH ON THE CRANKSHAFT BOLT AND SEE IF YOU CAN MOVE THE THING. IF YOU CAN, SQUIRT SOME OIL IN EACH OF THE CYLINDERS, ADD SOME FRESH GAS AND A NEW BATTERY, AND GIVE IT A TRY.

RAY IF YOU CAN'T MOVE THE SHAFT BY HAND, START SEARCHING FOR SOME?ONE WHO WANTS TO BUY IT AND RE?STORE IT. AND WHEN YOU RUN THE AD, JACK, MAKE SURE YOU USE THE PROPER TENSE OF THE VERB "TO RUN." IT SHOULD SAY "'55 CADILLAC. RAN GREAT."
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